Citizen Jane: Battle for the City
Citizen Jane: Battle for the City
IDFA 2016

Citizen Jane: Battle for the City

Matt Tyrnauer
United States
97 min
International Premiere
Festival history
The Canadian-American publicist and activist Jane Jacobs started her career as a journalist. Over the course of the 1950s and 1960s, she became an influential activist who propagated what were then controversial ideas about urban development and city planning. Jacobs, who died in 2006 at the age of 89, saw how so-called “urban renewal” programs destroyed more than they created, and she inspired local people to protest against the expropriation of their environment. Her book proposes that cities owe their own vitality and the safety and well being of their inhabitants to the diversity of people and activities on the streets. Her opinions brought her into frequent conflict with the New York urban planner Robert Moses, who had very different ideas about what should constitute a modern city: he advocated replacing old neighborhoods with uniform apartment blocks and highways cutting right through residential areas consists of an abundance of archive footage spanning from the 1920s to the present day, and includes interviews with contemporaries and experts in the field. It offers a broad overview of the dilemmas and opportunities encountered in the modern city.
World Sales
Screening copy